Top 10 bad taste comedies
Seth Rogen is no stranger to bad taste comedy. After all, the star has made a hugely successful career gleaming giggles from gross out movies. However, even by his own debauched standards his latest movie, a cancer comedy called ‘50/50’, is a bit, well, in bad taste.
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Jet black in tone, the film tries to find the funny side of life-threatening illness. Whether it works or not remains to be seen; ‘50/50’ has divided critics. But in that regard it’s nothing new - a quick glance over the dusty annals of Hollywood history uncovers a bevvy of bad taste movies which have tried, and sometimes failed, to wring comedy out of situations ranging from terrorism to the Holocaust. Here’s our top ten with the hits and misses of bad taste comedy.
Tache, bang, wallop, what a video... Borat in action
Hit: Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan (2006)
He’s made a career out of outraging audiences, but Sacha Baron Cohen outdid even himself with Borat, a mankini clad movie that singlehandedly incensed an entire nation. That nation was Kazakhstan who understandably got a bit hot under the collar over the comedian’s caricatured portrayal of their national culture that included casual racism, sexism and all manner of unpalatable xenophobia. It was funny though.
Miss: Freddie Got Fingered (2001)
With a title like this it’s fair to say audiences probably should have known what to expect when they entered cinemas for this flop from American funnyman Tom Green. But then again, can you really prepare yourself a protagonist swinging a baby by its umbilical cord and wrapping himself in the carcass of recently deceased roadkill?
Hit: Man Bites Dog (1992)
‘Big Brother’; fly-on-the-wall shows about airports; Rick Waller - reality TV has a lot to answer for. But as far as we know it hasn’t yet stooped so low as to stalk a serial killer for the audience’s enjoyment. That’s the premise behind this superb Belgian satire, which follows a charismatic killer as he cuts a bloody swathe through the local community. At one point he even hands out handy tips, such as explaining how it’s more cost-effective to attack old people than young couples because they have more cash and are easier to kill.
Jackass... Knoxville in the appalling 'The Ringer'
Miss: The Ringer (2005)
Watching Johnny Knoxville star in a film with people suffering from learning difficulties is perhaps nothing new. But in 2005 he broke away from the ‘Jackass’ stable and sought pastures new in this Farrelly Brothers er, comedy. The premise sees Knoxville’s protagonist pose as a contestant in the Special Olympics, an idea that’s almost as offensive as the predictable parade of bad taste jokes which principally revolve around humiliating the mentally handicapped.